The Boundaries of Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility
Since ESA data is only correlational, it can be supplemented with field
experimental research that demonstrates cause-and-effect relationships. For
instance, sponsorship effectiveness has been studied using a before-after
(pretest-posttest)-with-control-group design, in which ``before'' and ``after''
measures of attitudes toward sponsors and sponsorships were taken,
comparing control and treatment groups (Quester and Thompson, 2001).
Because this method would substitute communications measures of the
effectiveness of CSR for the financial measures of event study analysis, I
recommend that researchers use both ESA and field experience
simultaneously in order to achieve convergent validity.
The jury is in ± CSR is increasingly expected and can be rewarding for both
societal stakeholders and the firm. Ethical responsibilities, i.e. ethical CSR,
is the mandatory minimal level of social responsibility an enterprise owes its
constituencies. Given the ultimate responsibility of a corporation to its
stockholders, strategic CSR, which financially benefits the business through
serving society in extra-economic ways, is justifiable, and from society's
perspective, should be applauded, not condemned as ``self-serving''.
Altruistic CSR, whose benefit to the company is uncertain and even
irrelevant, lies outside the scope of business responsibility. If managers wish
Event study analysis
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